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Profiles

Mathilde Van Drooghenbroeck

Social Policy Specialist

Mathilde holds a PhD in Social and Political Sciences from the UCLouvain (Belgium). Passionate about research methods, she is a qualitative researcher also trained in mixed methods research. In the past, Mathilde worked for the National Belgian Fund for Scientific Research, for the Belgian Ministry for Employment but also for the Belgian Development Agency. At Innocenti, she is part of the Social and Economic Policy Unit, working as Social Policy Specialist on qualitative and mixed-methods studies under the GRASSP research programme and the Transfer Project.

Publications

The Impact of Valor Criança - Social Cash Transfer Pilot Programme in Angola
Publication

The Impact of Valor Criança - Social Cash Transfer Pilot Programme in Angola

The Government of Angola and its Development Partners developed and implemented Apoio à Protecção Social - APROSOC (‘Strengthening and expanding social protection to the vulnerable population in Angola’) between 2014 and 2022 as a first step towards establishing a national social protection system. A key component of the programme, Valor Criança, the first-ever cash transfer programme in Angola, was a child-sensitive unconditional social cash transfer programme targeted at households with children zero- to five-year-olds in selected municipalities prone to food-insecurity. Beyond the cash, the programme adopted a cash ‘plus’ approach providing linkages to services such as support to birth registration, early childhood development, nutrition counselling, income generation activities, adolescent empowerment, and Community Led Total Sanitation (CLTS). Evidence on the effectiveness of social assistance programmes in Angola is limited. This study addresses this evidence gap by examining the impacts of the Valor Criança programme on various domains of child and household well-being. The study also investigates the impacts on gender equality outcomes using the conceptual framework developed as part of the Gender-Responsive Age-Sensitive Social Protection (GRASSP) research programme (2018-2023) led by UNICEF Innocenti and funded by the UK’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO). The study examined in detail the following research questions: 1) What are the impacts of the Valor Criança on caregivers and children?, 2) What are the broader impacts of the Valor Criança on households?, 3) How do design and implementation features of the APROSOC and Valor Criança influence programme objectives and outcomes? and 4) How do household and caregiver characteristics shape the impact of the cash transfer programme? Lastly, the report findings help formulate policy and research recommendations in support of policy actions towards creation of a nationwide social assistance programme in Angola.
Mitigating the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 with a cash transfer in peri-urban Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Publication

Mitigating the socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 with a cash transfer in peri-urban Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo

In an effort to mitigate the negative socioeconomic consequences of the COVID-19 containment measures in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), UNICEF and the World Food Programme initiated a cash transfer programme in the peri-urban commune of Nsélé, near Kinshasa, the capital of DRC. The intervention reached about 23,000 households in the initial humanitarian phase which lasted for 3 months, and then scaled down to reach about 16,000 of the most vulnerable households for an additional 6 months of a social protection phase. A complimentary intervention to the cash transfer trained local associations and communities in women’s leadership, women’s rights, gender-based violence and positive masculinity, and financial management of income-generating activities. This brief presents the design of an impact evaluation of the intervention, the findings from the evaluation, and recommendations for policy and further research. The quantitative analysis found limited impacts of the intervention on household food security, resilience based coping, and dietary diversity which were the primary outcomes of interest. Qualitative interviews however showed more positive experiences and appreciation for the intervention. The study attributes the limited impacts of the intervention to challenges with implementation which needs to be addressed before scaling up. Important lessons about targeting will help the Government with designing the national comprehensive register for social protection.